By Elly Murray
Notice: The concert has since been rescheduled from August 10th to August 24th.
Seven Devils, a little town east of Sugar Mountain, is hosting one of their popular Music by the Lake concerts on Friday, August 24th at 6 p.m. This is the third of four concerts that they will have this summer, and Anne Fontaine, a chair member of the Town of Seven Devils Recreation Commission, says that “everybody’s invited to come.”
A cool summer breeze rolls across the lake to the backs of the band members, reaching the crowd as the musicians perform melodic music in front of the sparkling body of water. Families and friends from all over the High Country and beyond are spread out across the grass, reclining partially in lawn chairs or all the way on blankets. Friends catch up as they unpack their picnic baskets, and the music plays on, stretching across the beautiful, serene setting.
The events are always hosted by the Seven Devils Resort and the first of the four concerts in June featured Wayne Henderson, Helen White, and Herb Key. According to Bob Bridges, another chair member of the Town of Seven Devils Recreation Commission, the first concert was, “by all measures…a huge success.”
At the concert on the 24th, Amantha Mill, a band with an eclectic mix of music, will take the stage. Fontaine says that they are, “A bluegrass type band. …There are four or five people, so we never really know who’s gonna show up. Becca Eggers-Gryder, who is a district judge here, is in this group. They’re all professional people, I think one of them’s a doctor, one of them is a CPA, of course she’s a judge, an attorney. They play kind of a mix of music; bluegrass, swing, a little country, and basically kind of an Americana sound. (They’re) a lot of energy, a lot of fun: they’re just good people. They talk to the audience, interact, and they’re a great group to listen to.”
Debbie Powers, the town manager of Seven Devils says that Amantha Mill is made up of, “Community oriented folk and bluegrass performers…This is the third year that Amantha Mill has performed at Seven Devils, and is a favorite group that the community enjoys.”
The next concert on September 7th features Presley Barker and ShadowGrass, a group of four young bluegrass musicians who got started in 2014.
Fontaine is very excited for the concert, and she says that once the event gets started, “People are enjoying it, having a great time, just visiting with friends and listening to great music. You’ll see some people get up and dance, and just little groups of people with their friends. It’s a very nice evening, and if the weather cooperates, it’s really nice out by the lake.”
Seating is not provided at these concerts, but Fontaine says that, “We do have a deck on the resort club that for handicapped people. We have a ramp up there and there are some tables and chairs up there. If somebody needs that facility, we open that up to them.”
There will be signs posted throughout Seven Devils, directing you to the event at the Seven Devils Resort. Once you arrive, the parking people will assist you in finding a good spot, and Fontaine explains that, “If somebody comes up (who’s) handicapped, they can bring them right up to the ramp and they’ll help with that too.”
This event goes on rain or shine, so be sure to bring an umbrella, and maybe a raincoat! Fontaine says that, “Depending on the band, at times we have them come inside the resort club. Of course, it’s not really big enough to hold a huge crowd, so it depends on how many people are there. We’ve had some bands agree to just put tents up over the stage, and if it’s just drizzling and not a downpour, some bands have agreed to go ahead and keep playing. And people put their umbrellas up and listen….If it’s bad enough, we probably would just cancel.”
When asked why the Recreation Commission decided to start this event up a little while back, Fontaine responded, “We just try to provide activities for our citizens and residents, and of course we have a lot of visitors that come to our town…I chair the Recreation Commission, and it’s been our goal to just provide a lot of different activities. So we started this, I think this will be the third year. We started with just one concert every summer, and now we have four concerts; we try to do one in June, July, August, and September. And it’s just to provide some entertainment and activity for people.”
The Recreation Commission has several other events scheduled for the entertainment of the community this summer, including an exciting new art show. Celebration of Art is on Saturday the 21st from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Town Hall, and it promises to be an amazing show.
Fontaine explains that, “it’s all our local Seven Devils artists; I think we have 16 participants. On the 21st it will be just showing their art and different crafting that they do, and it’s open to the public…Some people have things for sale, some will just be for show.”
The Music at the Lake with Amantha Mill will be Friday the 24th from 6 to 8 p.m. The event is completely free of charge, and patrons are encouraged to bring lawn chairs, blankets, picnic baskets, and perhaps some umbrellas—just in case.
There are only four of these events this summer, so be sure to check out at least one! Fontaine says that, “We’d love to have people come out and see these great groups and join us and get to know a little bit about Seven Devils.”
The schedule for the remaining Music at the Lake concerts for this summer is as follows:
Aug. 24: Amantha Mill
Sept. 7: Presley Barker and ShadowGrass
The Seven Devils Resort is located at 870 Devils Lake Dr. For more information on the Music at the Lake concerts, and the rest of Seven Devils’ amazing events, please visit http://sevendevils.net/